Why Do Many People See Truth Differently?

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Meagain, Oct 6, 2016.

  1. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter

    ^'The map is not the territory' - Alfred Korzybski.
     
  2. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member

    Part VI:
    I leave Pirsig and Reach My Own Conclusion
    So what does all this mean in relation to the political arena? Those of us who follow only our own analogies believe they are the only ones to experience Truth directly; they don’t bother to look for harmonious reasoning among others. Instead they quickly find those with the same analogies and disregard those who may have differing analogies. No attempt is made to harmonize with their culture as a whole.

    Others recognize their analogies but they also expend the effort to rationalize not only their experience but also all the other experiences and analogies of everyone else. They do this by using the tools of reason to test their analogies against those of the others they encounter.

    The difference is that on the one hand Truth is interpreted by one limited set of analogies and on the other rational thought and critical thinking skills are used to reach a consensuses among all analogies. One way to do this is by proscribing to the rule of law which has been developed and recorded as one means of eliminating bias in regards to differing world view analogies.

    In the example of Hillary Clinton’s E-mail investigation, one school of thought draws on it’s understanding of the Truth by using its own analogies to judge the value of the Truth in relation to her use of a private server. The consensus of society as a whole, as expressed in its code of law and methodology of critical thinking and investigation, has no bearing on their understanding of the Truth. Any use of Classical methodology is disregarded as it interferes with their Romantic view of what the Truth actually is.

    The other school of thought looks at the matter and instead of accepting their own Romantic view first put forth as Truth, they marshal the Classical tools of rational thought to investigate multiple analogous scenarios that others have expressed and which may or may not be in harmony with everyone else’s Romantic Truth. One way to do this is to consult the written laws that have been developed in harmony with all of society and bring them to bear in one particular case. In the case of Hillary Clinton a completely rational investigation reveals that no laws were broken.
    Even if this school of thought disagrees with the legal findings, it will accept the legal ruling in regards to Hillary Clinton because it realizes that to do otherwise is to introduce chaos in society. If we abandon the rulings of the law, then we open society to the whims of everyone and anyone who demand that their version of the Truth is the only version of the Truth.

    In short no matter what version of the Truth one believes in regard to Hillary, a continued refusal to accept the legal findings is to show a complete lack of understanding of how a society arrives at collective Truths, that is, Truths that do not relay on individual claims of being the only one to possess or understand what the Truth really is.

    To do otherwise is to court despotism, autocracy, and anarchy.

     
  3. Perfect Disorder

    Perfect Disorder Paradoxically Spontaneous

    What's wrong with introducing chaos into society? It's only natural. The idea of Truth is a fun one but in the end it's just, well, Untruth.
     
  4. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    So this would mean that attempting to attain the Absolute truth through the conditioned intellect is a futile pursuit as all the interpretations of
    Truth is bound to be conditioned and hence bound to differ from person to person and even personally change with time through changes in one's
    conditioning.
     
  5. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member

    First make sure we are talking about two different truths, Absolute and Finite.

    Absolute truth can never be attained by using the intellect. Hence the Zen Koan, and the logic of Nagarjuna.
    If we compare Absolute truth to a river, trying to understand it is like trying to understand a river by scooping some of the water up with our hands.
    What we end up with certainly pertains to the river, but it's not the river. And the more we attempt to grasp what it is by squeezing out hands, the more the river disappears.

    When trying to understand Absolute true we form intellectual opinions about what it is. But by the time we have grasped it...it has flowed on and we each end up with a different size handful of what it was.

    IMHO
     
  6. NoxiousGas

    NoxiousGas Old Fart

    why are all your inquiries into these topics so steeped in Eastern philosophy/religion?

    to seek absolute truth you need to lose ALL the labels.
     
  7. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    This is well put.
     
  8. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    Because it is the most ancient philosophies and religions on earth. Also I happen to be from the East as well, so I put here what I know from my cultural perspective.

    Exactly. That is what eastern philosophy speaks about.
     
  9. NoxiousGas

    NoxiousGas Old Fart

    well the question was directed at MeAgain and I fear you may have missed my point.
     
  10. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    My apologies.
     
  11. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    I doubt that Absolute Truth can ever be attained, or if it is, that we can ever know that we know it. I operate by what Santayana calls "animal faith": biological urges prompt us to assume that our ideas refer to things existing in an external, natural world. The ultimate truth may be that I'm a brain in a jar, or a computer simulation like the Matrix (some academics with Ph.Ds actually believe that!). I assume that when I'm typing this (assuming I am) that there are other minds awaiting to read it and maybe respond. Whether or not that's actually the case doesn't bother me. I'm willing to take the chance. Our minds evolved to solve problems of survival, not to give definitive answers to questions about Absolute Truth. That said, I make decisions as best I can, on the basis of logic, intuition, personal experience, the available evidence and what I read--all of which are admittedly fallible. I trust, but can't prove, that that will result in better judgments than those of people who don't bother to think or read much, and don't put much stock in evidence for their beliefs.
     
  12. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    This is because Buddhahood or enlightenment is an unknown phenomenon in the west , probably because they are just recent civilizations.

    The Absolute Truth is to be experientially understood, not intellectually defined and comprehended as that would be as futile as a dog trying to catch its own tail.

    And unless the truth is uncovered, one is just wallowing in falsehood and taking consequently incorrect steps and actions, which can lead to disaster in the long run.
     
  13. Moonglow181

    Moonglow181 Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    Yeah, one part of the river could be far more polluted than another part.
     
  14. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    Another possibility is that those who think they've attained Enlightenment as Absolute Truth are simply deceiving themselves. Not at all uncommon, even in the West.
     
    1 person likes this.
  15. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    It is a possibility if one thinks so, because it is the thought that is the problem.

    Enlightenment comes not as a thought, but as an experience.
     
  16. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member

    The Eastern philosophies have interested me for a long time and I find them to have the most direct relationship to the various questions of life.
     
  17. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    So if you feel enlightened, you are enlightened?
     
  18. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    It is a state of consciousness, nothing to do with thoughts, feelings and sensations.
     
  19. Wu Li Heron

    Wu Li Heron Well-Known Member

    The absolute truth is the greater context of the truth determines the identity of everything including, not least of all, the absolute truth!

    When in trouble, when in doubt, run in circles scream and shout!
     
  20. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    I've learned a lot from the eastern philosophies, and they've certainly influenced my thinking about Christianity. It's really hard to generalize about them, because there are different schools of Hinduism, Buddhism, and even Taoism, and the individuals who practice them often have different takes on them. I think practitioners of Mahayana Buddhism have a valid criticism that Theravada Buddhism can be excessively preoccupied with personal attainment of enlightenment, just as some Christian Evangelicals are preoccupied with getting to Heaven. One thing I like about classical Buddhism is its lack of interest in the metaphysical concerns that we seem to dwell on here. The debate over the superiority of eastern or western traditions is one which I can't see the Buddha engaging in; I can't even see him engaging in a debate about Absolute Truth, which strikes me as similar to the medieval discussions about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. The Buddha's parable of the poisoned arrow illustrates the problems of such questions. One thing I like about Hinduism is its recognition, in the Bhagavad Gita, that there are many valid paths to truth. Some attain the Atman through contemplation, others philosophically, or by loving devotion or work. "If these faithfully practice what they have learned, they will pass beyond death's power."
     

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